Crockpot Thai Sweet Potato Soup

So the other day I bought a shiny new sweet potato, cooked it up, and then proceeded to find out I had a forgotten sweet potato, growing eyes and all, in my pantry, and as I hadn’t made sweet potato soup in awhile, and I am pro-using-what-I-have-on-hand, this recipe was born.

I whipped it up in my slow cooker, but you could totally make this on the stovetop if that’s your thing. And like most soup recipes, it is very flexible and very forgiving. Guideline below, but as with all my recipes, you are most welcome to get creative with it and use whatever you have on hand.

Crockpot Thai Sweet Potato Soup (makes 9 cups worth)

  • 1 medium sweet potato, diced (can be large chunks as the soup gets pureed)
  • 4 cups veggies (I used a frozen vegetable mix and some neglected swiss chard and kale I found in my freezer :p)
  • (optional) 1 apple, diced
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 tsp minced garlic, or a few garlic cloves
  • 1 scant Tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 3/4 cup milk milk
  • Scant 1 litre vegetable broth (I am very precise about measurements as you can see :p)
  • salt and pepper to taste (*be forewarned the curry paste adds some kick, and most broth is salty – I didn’t add any salt and pepper)
  • 2 Tbsp lime juice (beware this adds some serious tang, if that’s not your thing, ease off a bit)
Crockpot: Toss everything *except lime juice* into your crockpot and cook on High for 4 hrs or low for 8 hrs. Add lime juice and puree, sample, and add more salt/pepper/curry paste/liquid as needed. Aka use your common sense and do what you gotta do to make this soup something you love (for me it was perfect as is).
Stovetop: Saute onion and garlic a bit, add everything else *except lime juice* and bring to a boil. Simmer until veggies are cooked through. Add lime juice and puree, sample, add more salt/pepper/curry paste/liquid as needed. Aka use your common sense and do what you gotta do to make this soup something you love (for me it was perfect as is).

 

 

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Crockpot Lentil Lasagna “Casserole”

Once upon a time I stumbled across some forlorn lasagna noodles and a can of Campbells tomato soup in my pantry that needed to be used, especially the tomato soup – I honestly don’t remember the last time I ate canned tomato soup, but had bought it for when my brother came to visit in February (we have very different food tastes :p) and never ended up using it. I try to waste as little food as possible, so I was determined to find a way to doctor it up. I always wanted to include lentils, because are life, am I right? Vegetarians, unite! 😀 I digress…

After seeking out wisdom from google, and discovering that you can, in fact, used canned tomato soup in lasagna, I remembered that I am busy. And lazy. And that this week, the idea of having to precook lentils and make some sauce before assembling was not happening…enter THIS RECIPE by Connoisseurus Veg for a Slow Cooker Vegan Lasagna Soup.

I made so many tweaks to use up what I had on hand, that I basically made a new recipe. I must have accidentally added less liquid than she did, as after cooling overnight, I was left with what can best be described as a sloppy “casserole” instead of soup – and I’m not overly concerned about it.

That being said, if you want soup, feel free to add more liquid, or check out http://www.connoisseurusveg.com/slow-cooker-vegan-lasagna-soup/ , I bet the original recipe is great too. No broccoli or kale? Swap these out for whatever you have on hand. Seriously, this recipe is uber flexible, and as the queen of tweaks, I’m not at all offended if you don’t follow my recipe exact. Measurements tend to be approximate in my kitchen, and this is really mores of a guide than an exact recipe per se…and I should mention, it tastes so much better than it looks.

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I got 6 servings, measuring in at a rounded 1 cup each and serve with lots of veggies or salad on the side.

Crockpot Lentil Lasagna “Casserole”

  • 4 vegetable broth
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3/4 cup dried brown lentils
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley, or sub fresh parsley (I added about 1/4 cup fresh)
  • (opt) 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 can condensed tomato soup + 1 can water
  • 1 cup marinara/pasta sauce
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 8 lasagna noodles, broken into pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen broccoli
  • approx 1 1/2 cups kale

Place everything except for noodles and kale in slow cooker. Cook on high for 3-4 hours, until lentils are fully / nearly cooked. *Note: I don’t mind slightly overcooked lentils and broccoli, and was not at home, so I let mine cook the full 4 hours. If you like a “bite”, keep an eye on it.*

Stir in the noodles and kale, and turn slow cooker back on high and let cook until noodles are cooked through (mine took about 1 hour 15 minutes) – I recommend being home for this to keep an eye on it and avoid soggy noodles.

I had this for lunch and topped it with some shredded cheddar cheese – uber delicious, but totally optional. Enjoy!

 

 

Peanut Butter Yogurt Dip

Peanut Butter Yogurt Dip

  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • (opt) honey to taste

Mix well. Dip in fruit of choice or do as I did and chop up a bunch of fruit (I used apple) and mix it with dip and eat with a spoon.

Makes 3/4 cup.

Egg, Rice & Veggie Bake (21DF(x))

I am currently on Day 10 of the 21 Day Fix Extreme . Amidst gathering recipes I found this recipe on the Beachbody website for a Spinach, Tomato, Quinoa Breakfast Casserole . I found it Sunday night, which was perfect because Mondays I work at 7 am, and am always looking for something quick and reheatable for breakfast so that I can sleep as long as possible and avoid trying to stomach food too early. I’m generally not a fan of reheated eggs but I have eaten this the last 4 days for breakfast alongside a smoothie and it’s super delicious and a nice change from my regular egg on toast! I tweaked the recipe based on personal preference and ingredients on hand, but I’m sure the original is great too.

Egg, Rice, & Veggie Bake

Total Time: 40 min.
Prep Time: 15 min.
Cooking Time: 25 min.
Yield: 5 servings

Ingredients:
Nonstick cooking spray
2½ cups cooked rice (brown for 21DF(x)
8 large eggs, lightly beaten
¾ cup cottage cheese
5 cups veggies (I used a tomato, as well as some assorted frozen veggies – I just defrosted them a bit and chopped them smaller to ensure every bite was veggie-ful :D)
a generous sprinkle of dried parsley (though I imagine fresh would be amazing too!)
salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:
1. Heat oven to 375° F.
2. Lightly coat 9×12-inch baking dish with spray. Set aside.
3. Combine rice, eggs, cottage cheese, veggies, and parsley in a large bowl; mix well. Season with salt and pepper, if desired.
4. Pour  mixture into baking dish. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

21 DF(x) Containers Per Serving – 1 red, 1 green, 1 yellow

Crockpot “Baked” Apples with Cinnamon

The weather has been gorgeously sunny this week, which has led to many yoga sessions on the porch in addition to my normal workouts, which has led to me feeling fabulous, which has led to me wanting to eat healthier in order to continue feeling fabulous.

And so my stumbling across a giant bag of apples for 30% off, looking a bit weathered but still holding potential, could not have been better timed.

I diced some of those gems up and froze them for smoothies, and the other half was transformed into a what is basically a really healthy version of apple pie filling.

Go ahead lovelies! Get your dessert on, healthified style – your sweet tooth will never know the difference :p

Crockpot “Baked” Apples with Cinnamon (2-3 servings)

  • 4 apples, sliced (I left peel on)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp butter or coconut oil
  • (opt) 1 Tbsp cornstarch, to thicken

Throw everything into crockpot and cook on high for 1.5-2 hours until cooked as you like. I cooked mine 1.5 hours and it was soft but not soggy which was perfect for me.

Delicious on it’s own and probably great with ice cream too, which would sorta negate the whole healthified thing, but life’s too short to live without an occasional ice cream, am I right? :p

Enjoy!

 

One Bowl Chocolate Cake

Today my schedule was unexpectedly completely open, and the weather evoking spring in a wonderfully sunny day. Today was a day for me, to chill out and do things that I enjoy – yoga on the porch, enjoying a good book at Starbucks, a leisurely stroll to the grocery store (you read correctly, I actually really enjoy grocery shopping :D). And of course chocolate. Someone asked me today if I wanted a chocolate cookie, and I half-jokingly told her “There never needs to be a question with chocolate.” Every day is a good day for chocolate, and because I had time and enjoy baking, I decided to bake a chocolate cake. I was out of eggs, and was kind of debating going to get groceries or not, and literally googled “egg free chocolate cake” and found this recipe. As I do, I tweaked the recipe and whipped it up lickety split – seriously, it took me roughly 5 minutes and 1 bowl before dumping the batter into a pan to bake. How did it turn out, you ask, on the edge of your seat I’m sure :p I may or may not have already snarfed down 2 pieces. There will be repeats of this cake in my future for sure. Enough chit chat, there’s chocolate waiting, which is clearly more important…

One Bowl Chocolate Cake

  • 1/2 cup wholewheat flour
  • 1/2 cup white flour
  • (opt) 1 scoop chocolate protein powder (if omitting increase sugar and cocoa powder a bit)
  • 2 Tbsp cup white sugar (increase if not frosting the cake)
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup water

Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 8×8 inch baking pan.

In a bowl mix together dry ingredients. Make a well and toss in wet ingredients (seriously, just dump ’em in, no need to get fancy and pre-mix them :D). Mix together.

Scrape batter into the pan and bake for 25-30 minutes.

(opt) Once cool add your favourite frosting – I added some premade chocolate frosting and shredded coconut and it was amazing and worth what I’m sure was aLOT of calories.

Anyway. Enough talk. Go get your chocaholic on lovelies.

Power Toast

I’ve decided that anytime I make something that so completely and utterly hits the spot, I should throw “power” in front of it’s name. Haha jk, but doesn’t it just make you expect something great? And great this is…

I’ve started doing some cleaning one night a week at a hot yoga studio nearby – they’ve got this cool exchange where you help them out with the “grunt work” per se, in exchange for being able to attend yoga classes. So that is where I found myself last night, and I was able to attend a class on shift as well. For some reason at the end of a hot yoga class I’m always REALLY hungry – in a strange “I feel like I didn’t even eat today but I did…” sort of a way.

So this is the state I found myself in when I got home around 11 pm, well not only BEYOND hungry but of course too lazy to put in effort in the kitchen, and also wanting to keep noise to a minimum in consideration of anyone already in bed. So, #toasttotherescue :D. But seriously. And then being the #chefbrain that I am, my train of thought went something like so…peanut butter toast…(spots banana on counter) peanut butter + banana toast…cheese?…well peanut butter and cheese work…but will the banana work with the cheese?.. can’t go wrong with some fresh cracked pepper while we’re at it…

It was a don’t talk to me I’m eating, face buried in the plate type of a snack that I just had to share. I know it sounds weird but it’s delicious, trust me. Of course when your face is buried in the plate and you need food like YESTERDAY, no picture is in order.

Lemme know how you like the combo, or what some other interesting combos are that you like to eat. Enjoy lovelies.

Power Toast for 1

  • 1 pc toast
  • butter
  • peanut butter
  • 1/2 banana sliced
  • cheese (I used cheddar), slice enough to cover the piece of toast
  • fresh cracked pepper

Purple Power Smoothie

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I am currently sporting purple nail polish – well, what remains of my polish job a few days ago – anyone else feel like nail polish is a finnicky beast out to get them? I’ve been trying to stay on top of mine lately – I work in customer service and I feel like it just adds that extra something something. {#dressforsuccess am I right? :D} I literally just got my double coat on a couple days ago, only to have it start chipping the next day, though from what remains a mystery to me – perhaps my hardcore strength training workouts? :p

Anyway, in the name of all things color coordinated, todays smoothie is a beautiful purple color. The idea literally just popped into my head last week of putting beets into a smoothie, which led me to google if this was a thing (it is), pin some recipes, throw said recipes (and caution :D) to the wind and create my own smoothie. Be warned, it does taste a smidge like beet, so if you don’t like beet or healthy-esque things you may not like it, but for you fellow vegheads and bravehearted curious folk, recipe is below – measurements are approximate.

Purple Power Smoothie

  • 1/4 cup canned beets
  • 1/3 cup blueberries
  • 1/3 cup peaches
  • 1/4 banana
  • 1 small handfull greens (spinach, arugula, kale, romaine…)
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup green tea
  • (opt) a scoop vanilla protein powder

Blend and enjoy lovelies! More purple power to you 😀